A fiery wreck on State Route 512 near Parkland on Sunday left two people dead after a driver started going the wrong way down the highway. After the driver of a gray gray 2002 Chevy Trailblazer turned onto an off-ramp, another driver tried to wave the car down, but the wrong-way driver hit that car and kept going. The driver of the Trailblazer went on to sideswipe two more cars while driving the wrong way down State Route 512 before smashing head-on into a fourth vehicle.
The wrong-way driver, Robert Delacruz of Tacoma, died at the scene after he was ejected from his vehicle during the final crash. A passenger in one of the vehicles he hit, Jonathon J. Vivar of Puyallup, also died. A child who was riding in one of the vehicles that was hit was taken to a local children’s hospital. The driver of one of the vehicles he struck was in surgery for injuries sustained in the crash on Sunday evening.
State troopers spent several hours investigating the scene, but their full report will have to wait until an autopsy of the wrong-way driver can be completed. Toxicology tests can take several weeks to complete.
According to the National Transportation Safety Board, wrong-way crashes on highways are one of the most serious types of accidents. The combination of high speeds and a high danger of head-on collisions means that these accidents can be particularly deadly. Wrong-way crashes are frequently caused by drivers under the influence of drugs or alcohol, but wrong-way drivers can also sometimes become confused by age-related medical conditions, medical emergencies, or unclear road design. In Sunday’s accident, Mr. Delacruz had multiple opportunities to stop before his final, fatal wreck.
Resources for crash victims
Davis Law Group provides free resources for the victims of car crashes and other accidents. Attorney Chris Davis has spent over 20 years representing accident victims and their families. If you have a question about a recent accident, you are also welcome to fill out a contact form or call our legal intake team at (206) 727-4000
- More information about wrong-way crashes
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- FREE EBOOK: Washington Injury Law: A Reference Guide for Accident Victims